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|"When you have eliminated the impossible,
Written by Anselm
(9/15/2009 11:39 a.m.)
It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen doesn't do servants or children except when they serve her purposes - one instance being Margaret in the present work. However, in Ch.16 she surely pushes this to the extreme. The three sisters (yes, it is the three of them including Margaret, although you'd hardly know it) are out walking when they see in the distance
They argue about whether or not it is Willoughby until they come to
Note that the whole time, from when they are too far away to determine the nature of this figure to when they are only 30 yards away from him, it is only one figure that they see. It turns out to be Edward. He
....who just appears out of nowhere. Now, we know this to be impossible. Therefore, by applying Sherlock Holmes' most famous dictum as given in the header of this message, we arrive at the improbable but obviously true conclusion that he is a wizard from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and has Apparated there, or has used the Floo network or a portkey.
Unless someone can come up with an even likelier hypothesis that fits all the facts, I consider this point proved. I certainly wouldn't suggest that JA is so contemptuous of servants that they are literally invisible to her characters until the very moment when they just happen to become of use to them!
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